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Trae Young Dominates with 39 and 18 to Lift Hawks Past Joel Embiid, 76ers

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistJanuary 31, 2020

ATLANTA, GA - JANUARY 30: Trae Young #11 of the Atlanta Hawks shoots the ball against the Philadelphia 76ers on January 30, 2020 at State Farm Arena in Atlanta, Georgia.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2020 NBAE (Photo by Scott Cunningham/NBAE via Getty Images)
Scott Cunningham/Getty Images

The Philadelphia 76ers continued their road struggles Thursday, suffering a 127-117 loss to the Atlanta Hawks.

Trae Young dazzled again for the Hawks, scoring 39 points with 18 assists at State Farm Arena. A quick start from the guard put the home team up double digits in the first half, and the squad never trailed after the first quarter.

The 76ers kept things close while cutting the lead down to six in the final minute, but the Hawks came through with clutch free throws to stay in front.

It helped Atlanta (13-36) earn its fifth win in the last nine games after the Hawks took just six of the previous 38.

Philadelphia (31-18) had also played well in the past couple of weeks, but the problems away from home remain an issue. The squad is 9-16 on the road, including just two wins in the last 10 tries.

Joel Embiid totaled 21 points and 14 rebounds in his second game back from his finger injury.

    

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Notable Stats

  • Trae Young, G, ATL: 39 points, 18 assists
  • John Collins, F, ATL: 17 points, 20 rebounds
  • De'Andre Hunter, F, ATL: 15 points, 4 assists
  • Joel Embiid, C, PHI: 21 points, 14 rebounds
  • Ben Simmons, G, PHI: 31 points, 5 assists, 4 steals
  • Shake Milton, G, PHI: 27 points, 6 assists

      

Trae Young Lights It Up Again

In case anyone was questioning Trae Young as an All-Star starter, his recent stretch has silenced any doubters.

The point guard entered the day with at least 13 assists in four straight games, scoring over 40 in two of those contests. Even against an elite defensive team, he didn't slow down at all Thursday.

Young was on fire from the start of the game, filling up the stat sheet with 14 points and 10 assists in the first quarter alone.

He accounted for 36 of the Hawks' 39 first-quarter points, per Fox Sports Southeast.

The high level of play continued with 15 points in the second quarter, and he added 10 more in the second half.

He became the second player in NBA history to average 30 points and 15 assists over a five-game span, joining Tiny Archibald in 1972, per ESPN Stats and Info.

No one could stop him from getting into the lane and either getting fouled or finishing in the paint. When extra attention was placed on him, the guard found his teammates for easy shots.

Philadelphia entered the day allowing 104.8 points per game, second-fewest in the NBA, but gave up 74 in the first half and 127 in the game.

While the remaining Hawks have been inconsistent on both ends this year, they helped out in this one.

John Collins got his 11th double-double of the year, while De'Andre Hunter, Kevin Huerter and Vince Carter knocked down their threes. The team ended up with seven players in double figures to provide plenty of help around Young.

It was enough to pull the upset, proving this team can be competitive for the rest of the year. 

    

76ers Showcase Depth Down 2 Starters

Josh Richardson has been out with a hamstring injury while Al Horford was also inactive due to knee trouble, leaving the 76ers short-handed on the road.

The stars stepped up, with Ben Simmons totaling 31 points and five assists after a hot start. Tobias Harris and Joel Embiid came on late to help the team with a combined 42 points and 23 rebounds.

However, the big story was the play of Shake Milton.

The 2018 second-round pick set a career high in points by halftime and continued to pile it on offensively, finishing with 27 points on 7-of-12 shooting. He was 5-of-9 from three-point range as the team's lone threat from the perimeter.

In just his third career start, Milton justified the coaching staff's faith in him while providing the Sixers with another option offensively. Though this could be a fluke, he's certainly earned more playing time going forward.

Mike Scott also played well off the bench, reaching double figures for the first time in the last 23 games.

It wasn't enough for the team to escape with a win, but these players will be key for Philadelphia to reach expectations this season.

    

What's Next?

Philadelphia will continue its four-game road trip Saturday with a matchup against the Boston Celtics. Atlanta will also go on the road Saturday to take on the Dallas Mavericks.

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